Urbanization and Education
Another consequence of high rates of population growth that affects education is the rapid urbanization that is occurring in most less developed countries because of migration of redundant workers and their families from the countryside. Both enrollment ratios and educational standards are usually higher in urban than in rural areas. Therefore, educational planners need to keep these differences in mind and to take into account the rates of urban migration both in planning the allocation of educational resources and in budgeting additional funds for raising enrollment ratios and improving educational quality.
A llocation of Educational Resources
Without greatly increased educational expenditures, the necessity of providing primary education for rapidly growing numbers of children inevitably diverts resources away from technical, vocational, and higher education, all of which are required in many countries to provide the skilled technical manpower essential for economic growth. One of the most difficult problems faced by educational planners and administrators is to strike an optimum balance between the two kinds of education, in the face of public pressures for expanding school enrollment ratios and for a broader geographic distribution of schools.
The Role of Education in Reducing Fertility
The quantity and quality of education affect fertility rates, and hence population growth, in several ways:
1. Education postpones the age of marriage. Educational opportunities for women, particularly secondary and vocational education, tend to raise the age of marriage. This is clearly seen in the Khanna District of the Punjab in northwestern India, where the age of marriage of women has risen from less than 17 to more than 20 during the past decade as education and employment in teaching, nursing, and other occupations have become available. This postponement of marriage is one of the contributing causes to the decline of the birth rate from 38 per 1,000 in 1957-59 to 32 per 1,000 in 1966-68.
2. Educated women have fewer children. Evidence from several countries shows that women with 7 or more years of schooling have fewer children and smaller families than women who have had little or no education. The reasons are complex and not entirely understood, but among them are probably the greater access to information and to communications media possessed by educated women; the alternatives to childbearing available to them in the form of jobs and opportunities for service; their increased role in family decision-making; their greater ability to provide adequate nutrition and better